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White Suburbanization and African-American Home Ownership, 1940-1980

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  • Leah Platt Boustan
  • Robert A. Margo

Abstract

Between 1940 and 1980, the homeownership rate among metropolitan African-American households increased by 27 percentage points. Nearly three-quarters of this increase occurred in central cities. We show that rising black homeownership in central cities was facilitated by the movement of white households to the suburban ring, which reduced the price of urban housing units conducive to owner-occupancy. Our OLS and IV estimates imply that 26 percent of the national increase in black homeownership over the period is explained by white suburbanization.

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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 16702.

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Date of creation: Jan 2011
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Publication status: published as "A Silver Lining to White Flight? White Suburbanization and African-American Homeownership, 1940-1980," with Robert A. Margo. Journal of Urban Economics, 2013.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:16702

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  1. William J. Collins, 2003. "The Housing Market Impact of State-Level Anti-Discrimination Laws, 1960-970," NBER Working Papers 9562, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Leah Platt Boustan, 2010. "Was Postwar Suburbanization "White Flight"? Evidence from the Black Migration," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 125(1), pages 417-443, February.
  3. William J. Collins & Robert A. Margo, 2011. "Race and Home Ownership from the Civil War to the Present," NBER Working Papers 16665, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Dietz, Robert D. & Haurin, Donald R., 2003. "The social and private micro-level consequences of homeownership," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(3), pages 401-450, November.
  5. Ming Hong Suen & Karen Kopecky, 2004. "Suburbanization and the Automobile," 2004 Meeting Papers 134, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  6. Collins, William J. & Margo, Robert A., 2001. "Race and Home Ownership: A Century-Long View," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 38(1), pages 68-92, January.
  7. David M. Cutler & Edward L. Glaeser & Jacob L. Vigdor, 1999. "The Rise and Decline of the American Ghetto," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 107(3), pages 455-506, June.
  8. Richard K. Green & Michelle J. White, 1994. "Measuring the Benefits of Homeowning: Effects on Children," Wisconsin-Madison CULER working papers 94-05, University of Wisconsin Center for Urban Land Economic Research.
  9. William J. Collins & Katharine L. Shester, 2013. "Slum Clearance and Urban Renewal in the United States," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 5(1), pages 239-73, January.
  10. Weinberg, Bruce A., 2004. "Testing the spatial mismatch hypothesis using inter-city variations in industrial composition," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 34(5), pages 505-532, September.
  11. William J. Collins & Katharine Shester, 2010. "The Economic Effects of Slum Clearance and Urban Renewal in the United States," Vanderbilt University Department of Economics Working Papers 1013, Vanderbilt University Department of Economics.
  12. Turner, Tracy M. & Luea, Heather, 2009. "Homeownership, wealth accumulation and income status," Journal of Housing Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 104-114, June.
  13. David Card & Alexandre Mas & Jesse Rothstein, 2008. "Tipping and the Dynamics of Segregation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 123(1), pages 177-218, 02.
  14. Elizabeth Oltmans Ananat, 2007. "The Wrong Side(s) of the Tracks Estimating the Causal Effects of Racial Segregation on City Outcomes," NBER Working Papers 13343, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Weicher, John C. & Thibodeau, Thomas G., 1988. "Filtering and housing markets: An empirical analysis," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 23(1), pages 21-40, January.
  16. Edward L. Glaeser & Jesse M. Shapiro, 2003. "The Benefits of the Home Mortgage Interest Deduction," NBER Chapters, in: Tax Policy and the Economy, Volume 17, pages 37-82 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. William J. Collins, 2003. "The Housing Market Impact of State-Level Anti-Discrimination Laws 1960-1970," Vanderbilt University Department of Economics Working Papers 0304, Vanderbilt University Department of Economics.
  18. Karen A. Kopecky & Richard M. H. Suen, 2010. "A Quantitative Analysis Of Suburbanization And The Diffusion Of The Automobile," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 51(4), pages 1003-1037, November.
  19. Nathaniel Baum-Snow, 2007. "Did Highways Cause Suburbanization?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 122(2), pages 775-805, 05.
  20. LeRoy, Stephen F. & Sonstelie, Jon, 1983. "Paradise lost and regained: Transportation innovation, income, and residential location," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 13(1), pages 67-89, January.
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Cited by:
  1. Daniel K. Fetter, 2013. "The Twentieth-Century Increase in U.S. Home Ownership: Facts and Hypotheses," NBER Chapters, in: Housing and Mortgage Markets in Historical Perspective, pages 329-350 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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